Today we’d like to introduce you to Maria Alejandra Mata.
Maria Alejandra, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I was born in Caracas, Venezuela and moved to Boston in 2012 to go to New England School of Photography. I had been photographing concerts for a couple years before moving here but discovered many different sides to my artwork while at school. I continued developing my music work and at the same time exploring self-portraiture to deal with loneliness, being in a new city, which then evolved into exploring depression, self-hate and evolving after getting through tough times. It definitely influenced every aspect in my photography work, as I tend to gravitate towards vibrant colors and raw emotion both in my music photography and my self-portraiture.
Can you give our readers some background on your art?
My art has evolved over the years and it’s come from a very emotional place. It started with exploring my move to Boston and being completely alone in the city, and it started becoming more of a deep, emotional connection with myself. The kind of images I make depends on what I’m feeling. I went through a toxic relationship, readjusting my status as an immigrant, and an extremely difficult living situation all at once, and slipped into a deep depression. I was dealing with extreme self-hate and when everything came crashing down, I decided to seek help, and my art became my escape.
If there’s anything I want people to take away from my artwork is that anything is possible, you’re not alone, and that being a human is complex and difficult and sometimes it sucks, but there’s a burst of color at the end of the nightmare. I hope to inspire people to use whatever outlet is at their disposal to express themselves and let go of those difficult feelings that can get overwhelming. I believe that’s also why I’m so drawn to music in my more commercial work, because it’s a creative expression I enjoy and admire, and also serves as a healing element.
Artists rarely, if ever pursue art for the money. Nonetheless, we all have bills and responsibilities and many aspiring artists are discouraged from pursuing art due to financial reasons. Any advice or thoughts you’d like to share with prospective artists?
Just do it. I struggled financially for a very long time and as long as I had my camera and some free time, I would stand in front of it and create. I know it can be discouraging to not have what we think we need, but as long as you continue to create and tap into your spirit and experiences, you will have a ton of work you’ll be proud of no matter what. Also, knock every door, be humble and be nice. You won’t believe how many opportunities come from being a decent human being who’s also passionate about their craft.
What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
You can take a look at my website, www.mariamataphoto.com for all my art projects, and follow me on Instagram at @lecherrypie to stay up to date with my music work!
- Website: www.mariamataphoto.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @lecherrypie
Maria Alejandra Mata